Infertility primarily refers to the biological inability of a person to contribute to conception. Infertility may also refer to the state of a woman who is unable to carry a pregnancy to full term. There are many biological causes of infertility, some which may be bypassed with medical intervention.
Treatment depends on the cause of infertility and may involve:
- Education and counseling
- Medical procedures such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) and in vitro fertilization (IVF)
- Medicines to treat infections and clotting disorders, or promote ovulation
Causes of infertility include a wide range of both physical and emotional factors. A couple's infertility may be due to female factors, male factors, or both.
For men, the most common cause of male infertility is a varicocele. This is when the veins in the scrotum are enlarged on one or both sides. This heats the inside of the scrotum and may affect sperm production. A blockage in a man's reproductive system may cause male infertility. Some medicines can also cause infertility. Other causes of male infertility may include:
- Low sperm count
- Sperm that are abnormally shaped or that don't move correctly
- Un-descended testicle
- Underlying medical problem